Austin's Parks and Recreation Department has decided that Bull Creek District Park will continue to be an on-leash facility for dogs.
A leash requirement was put in place on a trial basis last summer, after fecal contamination was discovered in Bull Creek. After analyzing results, they concluded that the off-leash dog use was the most likely source of the contamination.
“When you have dogs on-leash and they go to the bathroom, the owner will pick up the feces. But when they are off-leash and defecate, the owner does not know if they have used the bathroom or not and does not pick it up”, said Parks and Recreation spokesman Victor Ovalle.
He said the department expects that some people won't be happy with this new, permanent rule.
“But we have the responsibility to put public safety above everything else," Ovalle said.
Parks and Recreation staff says they'll keep searching for another site where dogs can roam off-leash.
--Reported by Ioli Campos